Afcon 2017 Opens Today In Gabon Top story

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In short
The opening game of the tournament features home side Gabon as they take on Guinea-Bisseau, with a at Stade de lAmiti in the Gabonese city of Libreville.



The 2017 African Cuo of Nations (Afcon) begins in earnest today as the 31st edition of the continental tournament gets under way in Gabon.

The competition is always full of colour, surprise and entertainment as Africa's top nations go head-to-head in a battle of the best. In 2015, Gabon stepped in to replace Libya as the hosts because of the conflict in Libya. The tournament runs from today until February 5, with Ivory Coast defending their title from 2015 in Equatorial Guinea.

The opening game of the tournament features home side Gabon as they take on Guinea-Bisseau, with a at Stade de l'Amitié in the Gabonese city of Libreville.The second game takes place with Burkina Faso facing Cameroon in Group A's other match.

This year's edition has 32 matches over 23 days, featuring 16 teams - who begin their quest in four groups of four - and will end on 5 February with the winning finalists lifting the Italian-made trophy and taking home about fifteen billion shillings or $4m.

Uganda Cranes is among the sixteen teams in the tournament.  It is the first time in 39 years that Uganda is at the tournament.

And in a curious twist of fate the Cranes are paired in a group with Ghana, who were hosts in 1978 - the last time Uganda qualified - and beat the Cranes 2-0 in the final.

Uganda Cranes was  named National Team of the Year at the recent Caf awards and goalkeeper Denis Onyango was named Africa-based Player of the Year.

Drawn in Group D with Egypt, Ghana and Mali. Uganda finished second in the qualifying group and, despite their impressive defence, lack quality throughout their midfield and attack could affect their performance.